Experiences of an English Language Teacher

Episode 2: Five Ways To Introduce A Topic For Students

Hello and welcome to Episode 2 of TEFL Tips. Today we are looking at five ways to introduce a topic for students.

Tip 1, Guess The Topic. I like to get students to guess what the topic of the lesson is by doing hangman. Say the topic of the day is ‘inventions’, I get students to guess letters and then slowly it reveals the topic of the day.

Tip 2, Lexical Connections. I write up words related to the topic – these could be key words or words associated with the topic. Let’s take the topic of ‘daily routines’. I would draw a circle in the middle of the whiteboard and then connect daily routine activities to the circle which is still unwritten. I get students to discuss in pairs and then suggest what they think is the topic of the day. Rather than write up the words on the whiteboard, as in the previous tip, you could write words on slips of paper and the stick them up on around the classroom. The students can then wander around the class for a few minutes before you get students to tell you what they think the topic is about.

Tip 3, Class Survey. Rather than getting students to guess a topic, you could create a very simple survey for students to complete about themselves and then ask a couple of other students. Make a series of questions related to the topic and then hand out the survey for students to complete. When students are completing the survey, they mustn’t sit down. Once students finish the class survey, feedback from the whole class to find out of any interesting answers.

Tip 4, Musical Topics. For this activity, you need to find between 3 to 5 songs related to the topic that you are teaching. So for example, you if you are teaching about transport you could songs such as ‘Waitin’ For The Bus’ by ZZ Top, ‘I Got A Car’ by George Strait and ‘Ride The Train’by Alabama. Students listen to snippets to each song and then guess the topic. If you are unsure of songs about a particular topic, just type into Google “Songs about …” and add the topic. Google will list a variety of songs about the topic to help you choose.

Tip 5, Picture This. You put up pictures about the topic around the classroom or project it onto the whiteboard. Students then tell their partner about their thoughts of the topic and then you feedback from the whole class after a few minutes’ student discussion. You finally reveal the topic to see how close students’ predictions were.

If you liked today’s TEFL Tips, please don’t forget to Like the video and Subscribe if you haven’t already. When Subscribing, hit the notification bell and click on ‘Always’ and you will be told when I upload another video. Let me know in the comments which idea you prefer.

I shall see you in another episode soon and happy teaching all!

1 Comment

  1. Got it. I will try out these tips. Thanks!

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